A Special Message from Charles Phan
December 26, 2012
Dear CUESA supporter,
As a professional chef and father of three, I understand the importance of passing the essential skill of cooking on to children. In an era of skyrocketing diabetes and obesity rates, knowing how and what to cook can save your life.
My flagship restaurant, The Slanted Door, is located in San Francisco’s Ferry Building, which is also home to the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. While running my restaurant I’ve gotten to know the farmers who bring their fresh, sustainably grown produce to this outstanding market every week. I am proud to be a long-time supporter of CUESA (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture), the organization that operates the market.
CUESA has made a real difference—not only in the viability of the small farms and artisan businesses that sell in their market, but also in their work to educate urban residents about our food system. I’m happy to see them devoting more energy to working with kids, so that youth from a wide variety of backgrounds can start learning about (and tasting!) our abundance of local food.
Thanks to CUESA’s new Foodwise Kids program, hundreds of young students are being introduced to the farmers market community on field trips that conclude with a healthy cooking class. Seeing their small hands carefully assembling a fresh salad reminds me that it takes more than access to nutritious fruit and vegetables to change eating habits. Knowledge, familiarity, and, above all, empowerment help them become better eaters. When children choose produce themselves, meet the people who grow it, and create their own meal with it, resistance to new foods just melts away.
CUESA offers this program free of charge to public elementary schools. But they can’t do it alone. Please join me in making a year-end gift so that the organization can reach more children and change more lives.
Your gift of $50 buys fresh produce for an entire class. A generous $250 contribution means CUESA can purchase equipment needed (such as cutting boards, bowls, and knives) to build a complete teaching kitchen.
Supporters like you make the Bay Area food community what it is today. Thank you for helping CUESA’s programs reach new audiences. And for saving a few lives while you’re at it.
The Slanted Door, Owner/Executive Chef